Visiting Massachusetts - Things to Do in Salem
This article will give you a detailed review of my recent visit to Salem, Massachusetts, the town most well-known as the home of the Salem Witch Trials which occurred in 1692 and resulted in the deaths of 19 people accused of witchcraft. Salem today is a great tourist attraction and Salem features a number of great attractions related to the witch trials, great restaurants and bars, and other fun things to do. Located only 30 minutes north of Boston, this city is a great place to visit when checking out Boston! Whether you are visiting for Halloween, in town for business or taking a trip with the family, Salem has a lot to offer.
What is There to Do in Salem? Fun Things to Do When Visiting The Salem Witch Town
One thing is for sure - when you visit Salem, you will have plenty of options for entertainment. The city features a number of unique museums and exhibits related to the Salem Witch Trials as well as a number of good haunted houses and historical sites.
*The Salem Witch Museum - This is Salem's most visited museum. From their website: "The Salem Witch Museum brings you back to Salem in 1692. Experience the drama of history in life-size stage sets, figures, lighting and a stirring narration. Live guides take you through changing interpretations of witches, the truth behind the stereotypes, witchcraft practice today and the frightening phenomenon of witch hunting." This is a no-brainer to visit on your trip to Salem if you want to learn more about the Salem Witch Hysteria. The museum features a number of interest artifacts and history buffs will eat it up!
*Count Orloks Nightmare Gallery and the Salem Nightmare Factory - The Best Haunted Houses in Salem
The Nightmare Gallery is a must-see for horror fans! The creatures and figures you will see are by far the coolest thing you will see in Salem. "This tribute museum is dedicated to all those who have entertained us in the world of Horror! Actors, directors and special effects wizards of the past and present are all honored here with nearly fifty life-sized realistic recreations of the horror's genre's most memorable characters," according to the museum description. It's basically an overview of the history of horror films and showcases amazing wax figures from early horror movies up until the present day.
*The Witch Dungeon - This features a re-creation of the events of the Salem Witch Trials. You get to see a scene which occurred during the trials as a woman is accused of witchcraft and gets sentenced. After the performance they take you down to a dungeon which shows you what prison was like for the people sentenced to witchcraft. This is good for kids and fun for adults as well, and isn't too scary. You will learn a lot!
The Salem Toy Museum - "Vintage Toy Museum and Gift ShopThe Salem Toy Museum is a celebration of the classic toys we all grew up with." I didn't have time to visit this but I have heard good things!
The House of the Seven Gables - "Built in 1668, this is the oldest surviving 17th century wooden mansion in New England and one of the most famous in America. The House of the Seven Gables inspired author Nathaniel Hawthorne to write his legendary novel of the same name. Visitors can tour the house and other buildings on the campus. Admission fee."
Old Burying Point Cemetary - "The Charter street burial ground, historically known as Olde Burying Point is the second oldest *recorded* burial ground in the United States. Interred within it are such notable figures as Samual McIntire, Giles Cory's second wife, Lt. Col. John Hathorn Esq.; better known as "the hanging judge" (the one judge who never repented for his actions during the hysteria), many influential members of the Freemasons, and a passenger on the Mayflower. Several notable figures involved in the Salem Witch Trials can also be found buried here."
This is a must-see! And it is obviously free, which is a plus. I would recommend visiting this after you visit other attractions which will teach you all about the witch trials.
Salem Witch Memorial - "Each of this park's 20 stone benches represents a person executed in the infamous 1692 witch trials." Another attraction with free admission.
Salem Maritime National Historic Site - "Salem Maritime, the National Park in Salem, is a nine-acre historic site located on Salem’s waterfront that tells the history of Salem’s international trade and the sailors and merchants who built the economy of the young United States."
These are just a few of the entertainment options that Salem has to offer. There are plenty more!
The Best Hotel to Stay at in Salem, MA
What is the best hotel to stay at when visiting Salem? I would recommend the following hotels: The Salem Waterfront Hotel & Marina, the Salem Inn, and the Hawthorne Hotel. For my last trip to Salem, I stayed at the Hawthorne Hotel. It was an overall great experience and the food inside the hotel was very good.
Best Restaurants in Salem, MA
What is the best restaurant in Salem, MA? Thankfully, Salem isn't all about witches - the food is pretty good, too.
The following restaurants are all worth a visit: Bella Verona (Italian), Red's Sandwich Shop (American, Deli), Nathanial's (Seafood), The Hungry Whale (American), Gulu-Gulu Cafe (American, Coffee Shop), The Old Spot (Bar Food), Fins Seafood, New England Soup Factory, Seaport Cafe, Witch's Brew Cafe, etc.
Nightlife in Salem, MA
For adults, there is also plenty of nightlife options such as bars and clubs. But there are also some unique things to do such as visit the Witches Cottage at the Griffen Theater. It's a live performance and a spooky experience - great special effects and cool costumes, but it is also an informative experience.
I hope you enjoyed this guide on things to do in Salem, MA, and a trip review on my most recent visit. Salem is certainly an interesting and unique town which a dark history. I am sure that you will not only have a good time on your visit, but you will learn a lot about the history of the witch town!